Community action planning in East Delhi: a participatory approach to build urban disaster resilience



The paper addresses disaster risk of an urban community in a mega city, which experiences high risk to natural hazards. The Community Action Planning (CAP) tool is used in this case. It has been developed from five resilience dimensions (physical, social, economic, institutional, and natural), 25 parameters and 75 actions. A detailed CAP structured questionnaire survey was conducted with 89 Residential and Welfare Associations (RWAs) in East Delhi, India situated in three types of settlements: planned Delhi Development Authority (DDA) housing and societies, colonies, and urban villages. The result identifies and prioritizes 32 actions as important for all three settlements. The result shows both consistent and inconsistent responses from RWAs. To give some examples, parameter S3 is “tasks to reduce number of people suffer from water borne diseases after a disaster”. In response to this parameter, approximately 80% of total respondents prioritized action (A1), “promoting people to take preventive measures after a disaster”. It shows consistent response from all three settlements. However, parameter S5 is “tasks to improve the awareness and knowledge about threat and impact of disasters”. Approximately 40% of total respondents prioritized A1, “organizing training program for awareness and knowledge building”. This action was prioritized in planned DDA housing and societies (56%) as well as in colonies (52%). However, none of the respondents from urban villages prioritized this action. These responses show inconsistency in response to specific action. In addition, the study shows the potential impact of CAP process for other communities in cities that are experiencing disaster risks and impact of climate change.


Community action planning Delhi (India) Disaster risk reduction Participatory approach Resilience Urban community 



The first author acknowledges the support of the Japanese Government (Monbukagakusho: MEXT) for its scholarship and Kyoto University’s Environmental Management Leadership Program (EML). Support from Global Center of Excellence (GCOE) program “Human Security Engineering for Asian Megacities” is also acknowledged. Cooperation from the Bhagidhari Cell of Delhi Government, Residential and Welfare Associations (RWAs), and SEEDS India is highly appreciated.


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies, Kyoto UniversitySakyo-Ku, KyotoJapan

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